Jon Faddis

The Carnegie Hall Jazz Band

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AllMusic Review by

Although the repertoire on this CD includes "In the Mood," "Sing, Sing, Sing," and "I'm Getting Sentimental Over You," this is not a swing revival set. All eight of the standards performed by the All-Star Carnegie Hall Jazz Band were rearranged and, to an extent, reinvented, particularly the more vintage material. Jim McNeely's complex charts for the older songs, while retaining the melody and hints of the famous versions in spots, generally sound like new music. "Shiny Stockings" is given a new chart by Slide Hampton that is not half as memorable as the original and it somehow seems unfair that the more recent "Giant Steps" and "Frame for the Blues" were allowed to keep their original flavor while the swing tunes were drained of their more joyful harmonies. Randy Sandke's arrangement of "South Rampart Street Parade" uses the original framework but has dissonant ensembles and exaggerated parade rhythms that on a whole sound rather dumb. In the program, there are some fine solos from trumpeter Jon Faddis (who is also a major force in the ensembles), saxophonists Ted Nash, Jerry Dodgion, and Dick Oatts (the latter's Coltrane-ish soprano on "Sing, Sing, Sing" is a high point), trombonists Slide Hampton, Dennis Wilson, and Steve Turre, trumpeter Ryan Kisor, pianist Renee Rosnes, and drummer Lewis Nash, in addition to guest tenors Lew Tabackin and Frank Wess. But the overall results seem rather pointless, tearing down the past in favor of a concert stage band sound.